Monday, June 22, 2015

The SFR Brigade Cafe Androids & Aliens

Welcome to the SFR Brigade summer café! This is the 4th week of the café and we are serving up Androids and Aliens this week. 
Androids and aliens are near and dear to my heart. I love reading books involving them and I love writing them. My favorite is when there is a mix of the two.

My writings involve aliens made from pure energy that have robotic bodies to contain the energy: sentient robotic aliens from the planet Beryll. They cannot take an organic form because their energy core would burn up an organic body. Being called 'robots' is very offensive to Beryllians, though, so I have to be careful with that word.

Despite having robotic bodies, their movements are very fluid and smooth. Think more like Ultron from "Avengers" instead of Robby from "Forbidden Planet." They are able to manipulate their energies along with their bodies to project matter and retract it too. They do this through a form of pair production, a technology humans want to replicate once they come into contact with humans. Humans call them Materializers because they have mastered pair production and contain it so fluidly that it appears that they materialize matter out of nowhere.

Even though Beryllians are pure energy at their core, they still have to have an outside energy source to help fuel their mechanisms and circuitry. There are several ways they can ingest fuel. They can consume it like a liquid; Earth gasoline isn't their favorite, but it does the trick. They also have tiny solar cells lining their upper backs and shoulders that they can manipulate to face any direction. I suppose a nice appetizer would be to sit out under the noon sun and soak up some rays.

Since we're human and can't soak up energy from the sun as sustenance, I have a very simple recipe for a nice refreshing drink on a hot sunny day. Not exactly an appetizer, but it's filling enough to be an appetizer, certainly a pallet cleanser before the main course.

Refreshing Lime Fizzy

1 gallon Lime Sherbet ice cream (or sorbet) straight from the freezer
3 quarts of pale Ginger Ale (chilled)
2 cans of Sprite (chilled)

Dip out frozen sherbet ice cream into a punch bowl. Pour ginger ale and sprite over the sherbet. This recipe is great with raspberry sherbet as well! Enjoy!
For a more adult drink, substitute a strawberry Moscato wine instead.


My short story 'starters' are available on QuarterReads:

"The Skellyd Hunters"

With a core-bonded strength few understand, Bazin and Miaxa are Beryll's finest warriors. Sometimes they go a little too far and Ander is left with the consequences, for better or worse. (Rated M)

"Meet Douglas Fir"

Being human isn't easy with robotic alien residents misunderstanding the simple stuff. Though, Alex can't imagine his family life without Bazin and Miaxa. Time to have them over for Christmas. (Rated PG)

QuarterReads is a wonderful site for buying and selling short stories, but it does require a $5 subscription (with that subscription, you get 20 reads, which at a quarter a piece equals to $5...hence QuarterReads).

However, I'm gifting 2 reads to anyone who comments below (no subscription required), so you can read "The Skellyd Hunters" and "Meet Douglas Fir" for free (again, no subscription required, so it's completely free)! Please include your name and email in your comment and you will receive 2 free reads from QuarterReads. (There will be a week delay since I will be on vacation at the time of this post. Also, I know Brigade members are trying not to bogart all the prizes, but please go ahead and comment if you'd like a couple of free reads. I have plenty of reads to gift out to people.)

I have several works in progress regarding the Beryllians and can't wait to further introduce them soon.
If the rafflecopter code doesn't work below, click this link to go direct: 
Also, please visit the other participants to find out their serving of science fiction romance!

Inlinkz Raffle a Rafflecopter giveaway

Friday, May 29, 2015

Review: Keir by Pippa Jay


When I first started reading Keir, it was not what I was expecting, feeling more like a fantasy novel when I was hoping for science fiction. I didn't like Keir's people and liked the whole witchcraft, burn 'em at the stake, even less. What kept me reading were the characters, Keir and Quin, and Pippa's amazing ability to paint a picture with words. I really liked these two characters and wanted to see how the romance was going to work, especially since they weren't particularly into each other at first. I enjoyed the slow build to their relationship. And, oh my gosh, finding out the relationship of a certain character to Keir was one of those revelational moments that kept me turning the page (don't want to say who...spoilers and all).

While the first part of the book wasn't my favorite, it was necessary to understand who Keir is and where he is coming from. The second part of the book gives more insight into who Quin is and where she is coming from.

Lyagnius was getting closer to the science fiction and I loved the descriptions of Surei, the avian doctor, as well as the other aliens there. The med fac with the memorphorm beds was cool. Really, the descriptions of just about everything was excellent. Have I mentioned Pippa's ability to paint a picture with words? It makes me want to read anything and everything she has written.

There was a scene with a couple of characters that seemed abruptly introduced, as well as a change in feel and tone, as if two books were put into one, but it was all pulled together pretty well as I kept reading. One could expect such a change while traveling with someone who can go anywhere in time and space.

Then we get to Metraxi. Oh my gosh, this is exactly what I was looking for! The imagery and world building was excellent! I loved T'rill, T'reno, S'rano...all the Metraxians, even R'hellek. He was a fun villain to read. I absolutely loved this description of T'rill's audience chamber in the Metraxi palace: "Light poured through a giant crystal set in the roof, dancing across the chamber as though shining through clear, tropical waters." I could just see it perfectly. Breathtaking.

The part when they were fishing and Keir didnt want her to lead the way had me in giggle fits. Then I felt so bad for him how Quin misinterpretted his unease. The romance was excellent! I loved the balance between their points of view, each of their thoughts of how the other couldn't possibly be interested. There was great emotional conflict and Pippa's ability to bring those emotions to life was masterful.

There are also a few mainstream influences that I particularly enjoyed. Keir's persecution for being different reminded me of how people treat mutants in X-Men. Keir himself was vaguely reminiscent of Nightcrawler. Quin traveling through time and space with a companion was reminiscent of Dr. Who and the Emissary reminded me of Darth Vader. The story is unique and stands on its own quite well, but I did enjoy these elements, especially since they are three of my favorite things.

I love how nothing was held back either, nothing was too horrendous to touch upon. There are a couple of shocking events that really got me going. When an author is capable of making me feel so much for an imaginary being, I'm a fan for life. Bravo!


Book description:

A demon waiting to die…

An outcast reviled for his discolored skin and rumors of black magic, Keirlan de Corizi sees no hope for redemption. Imprisoned beneath the palace that was once his home, the legendary ‘Blue Demon of Adalucian’ waits for death to finally free him of his curse. But salvation comes in an unexpected guise.

A woman determined to save him.

Able to cross space and time with a wave of her hand, Tarquin Secker has spent eternity on a hopeless quest. Drawn by a compulsion she can’t explain, she risks her apparent immortality to save Keir, and offers him sanctuary on her home-world, Lyagnius. But Quin has secrets of her own.

When Keir mistakenly unleashes the dormant alien powers within him and earns exile from Lyagnius, Quin chooses to stand by him. Can he master his newfound abilities in time to save Quin from the darkness that seeks to possess her?


You can find the book on Amazon here:

Sign up to Pippa's no-spam newsletter to get updated on the latest releases, giveaways and special offers. Exclusive snippets and stories coming soon!  Her favorite place to hang around and chat is on Twitter as @pippajaygreen.


Friday, May 22, 2015

Cover Reveal! Love in the Time of Coffee by AR DeClerck

Life as a geeky math chick with little patience and time for men is never easy. When a handsome stranger spills a caramel macchiato all over her term paper Irissa Daniels thinks her luck just might be a 'changin. Mac McCleary is tough, smart and sexy and he treats Irissa like the only woman in the world. Things are going great, but life seems to get in the way. Mac's dad is sick, his business is in trouble and his only hope to keep it going is to get involved with a very shady character. Soon Irissa begins to wonder if she and Mac will make it to happily- ever-after after all.

Love in the Time of Coffee is very complicated indeed.

Cover Art by Rachel Olson at No Sweat Graphics. The book will be available May 22!

Follow AR DeClerck's journey through reading, writing and publishing: